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Chatterbox: Upon examination


Recently we talked about the way in which corporations soak up the largest portions of our nation’s wealth, how that affects us daily, and the lack of reciprocity.

Certainly, many of us don’t want to hear about it; but it must be heard. I often think of the three little monkeys: hear no evil, etc. No national society can afford to adopt that attitude. If not addressing an issue made it go away, that would be great. We’d all address only the pretty things and life would be Barbie’s Dream House. That’s not reality, and the only way to achieve a life model that works for everyone is to have one that works for everyone.

We Americans have grown into, and been groomed into, a life of accepting the abuses of those who have grown grotesquely rich abusing us. Sure, we can look at industrial magnets and industrious individuals who put their shoulder to the wheel, made good on an idea, manufactured a product or commercialized an idea, worked it and made a fortune. There’s nothing wrong there; that’s the American way. The problem arises when they abuse the support system, or only work for it to a point. Then, use their money, connections and power to continue through corruption. Yes, corruption is a tough label. We hear many euphemisms that make it softer, but no amount of euphemism makes it anything but corruption.

Often, today, a corporation, or a group of corporations, will solicit the paid assistance of any willing government official or representative – supposedly working for the people. This assistance is to ensure that certain legislation which will increase their ability to generate continued or increased profits is passed. This assistance, and the resulting activity, is illegal. Often, legislation making it legal, for corporations, will also be passed to protect the guilty.

The 2020 campaign is already in our collective face. Many of us support our personal champion. When individuals modestly support a candidate who shares their views, that’s donating. When corporations “donate” millions to a representative who guarantees support for their corporate agenda, that’s corruption – and it happens all the time.

How does the energy industry, flying in the face of what is being beautifully done around the world with huge success, get permission to drill for oil in America’s National Parks? How do they convince a nation it is necessary?

Even if we don’t agree with the 93 percent of scientists who say we must end fossil fuel use, have we forgotten the Exxon Valdez and the BP drilling spill? How does an oil company get physical with indigenous people without that being deemed criminal and without answering for that criminality?

How does a pesticide manufacturer become the grower of over 80 percent of the world’s corn, or continue to manufacture and advertise a chemical proven to cause cancer? How do banks, which have been rescued from oblivion by public money, claim record profits for stockholders and top tier officers? How can a lifesaving drug cost so much money that people actually opt to die?

Why is medical debt still the number one cause of personal bankruptcy in America? Why are parents unable to afford their kid’s insulin, or epi-pens? Why does a nation, not involved in a world war, have a military budget of nearly three-quarters of a trillion dollars annually? Why does a local police department need a tank? Why does your neighbor need guns that shoot nearly 500 bullets per minute?

Why is American education being sold to private corporations, as are so many American public entities? Why is our population 5 percent of the world’s population, yet, we hold 25 percent of the world’s prisoners? Why do they who defend the use of “less government” use “more government” to gain their goals?

The answer to all these questions is the same: corruption.

These are just so much chill from the tips of many icebergs. The truth is out there, if we love our country enough to see it, we must recognize the culprits and take them to task.

We can call it hype, spin, fear mongering, fake news and offer tens of ways to ignore it, or we can deny it; that’s a favorite. Denial is good … seriously. Denial gives many of us the ability to get through our day without thoughts of suicide. Denial makes us feel comfortable, less like a chump.

Unfortunately, denial doesn’t make anything untrue or implement change. If it did, we’d all be on the bandwagon – and building bandwagons for others to jump on.